Experts see Nokia market share growing

Nokia could well take 40 per cent of the global market, according to the chief executive of one of its distributors.

"Nokia's market share is on its way towards the 40 per cent mark, and it has a superior standing in cheap, mid-range as well as high-end wireless devices," Brightpoint chief executive Bob Laikin told Finnish financial daily Kauppalehti. Brightpoint is a distributor of mobiles and other wireless devices in the US.

Nokia, the world's top mobile phone maker, is Brightpoint's largest customer, and reported a global market share of 36 per cent in the first quarter of 2007.

Brightpoint estimates 200 million smartphones - one of Nokia's key segments - will be sold this year.

Laikin also said he expected Apple's new iPhone, set to go on sale in the US on 29 June, would have only a novelty position in the market.

"Apple's iPhone will sell in the US in the coming quarters maybe one to two million units. That is quite small, considering that perhaps 170 million cellphones are being shipped in North America this year," Laikin told Kauppalehti. Apple's phone costs $500-$600 (250-300), while many Americans wish to buy a device for $99 (49), he said.

"Apple will have to do other things in addition to creating hype, if it wants a large number of buyers for its phone," Laikin was quoted as saying.

"The (iPhone) offering will be modest to begin with, as it takes time to start up full production."

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